5 Reasons To Take Extra Passport Photos On Holiday

5 reasons to take extra passport photos on holiday -Paspoc

You might think that the only thing you will need passport photos for is your passport – nothing could be further from the truth. There are several other reasons that you should take your surplus passport photos with you on foreign journeys, and here we run through some of the most important.

1. Cards and passes

Depending on your country of destination, you could be asked for a passport photo when applying for a card or pass on your trip. This could be to one of the national parks in Africa, where many countries ask for passport photos in order to process a multi-day pass for your stay.

2. Phones and SIM cards

Planning to stay in touch with loved ones and friends back home while you are away? In that case, you should be aware that in some cases you might be asked for a passport photo in order to register for a native SIM card or phone package.

3. Visas

If you are traveling through a number of countries and haven’t arranged your visa prior to travel, or plan to extend it once you are in your destination country, in a lot of cases it can be a good idea to carry a passport photo in case you need to provide one.

4. Lost or stolen

Should the nightmare scenario occur, and you have either lost your passport while abroad or had it stolen, you will be glad of an extra passport photo if you need to arrange a new passport while you are away. This is relevant for those in need of a quick replacement to enable them to travel onwards.

5. Luggage identification

Have you ever thought about using your passport photo as a luggage identifier? This is really easy to do – just slip a passport photo alongside your address details in the plastic display provided on many pieces of luggage, and make it easier for your belongings to be identified should you ever be parted from them.

So there you have it, other uses for your passport photos that make them an important inclusion to pack for your trip – it is better to be safe than sorry!

Best 3 Simple Photo Editing Fixes

Passport Photos

With so much negative press, Photoshop is seen as a bit of a bad guy in the photographic world. The headlines talk about how magazine editors have used it to airbrush blemishes and take inches off their cover girl’s waist. Used correctly though, Photoshop and other photo editing software can take a barely acceptable passport photo to something the authorities will have no trouble accepting.

If you’re taking your passport photo at home, and then sending it on to Paspic, here are some things you can do to your photo to make it more acceptable.

1. Shadows

Beware of shadows that can obscure your face’s features. Shadows were used enthusiastically by passport fakers to disguise the fact that the passport was forged, which is why the authorities are so displeased by them. Aesthetically unflattering, a shadow is a sure-fire way to get your passport photo rejected. If you’re able to adjust the contrast and brightness of your image using your photo editing software, you may be able to make them disappear. Don’t go overboard though. It might be easier just to take your photo in a different location and try again.

2. Blur

Unlike our passport photo booths, digital cameras are designed to focus in all sorts of different places, and unless you’re very good at manipulating your camera’s autofocus, or are competent with manual focus photography, you may find that the camera has focused on something else, meaning that your face, or even part of it, has come out looking blurry. This is a quick fix with your photo editing software though, as long as you can find the Sharpen function. As before, don’t go over the top with it, as it can make your image quite grainy.

3. Overexposure

It sounds a bit controversial, but in fact, all it means is that there’s too much light in your photo. Back in the old days when cameras took rolls of film, too much light entering the lens could damage the film’s surface, ruining the photo. In the digital photography age, the cause is the same, but the result is a washed-out, bleached look to your photo. If it’s not too badly washed out in appearance, you may be able to fix it using the brightness and contrast settings, or you could re-take the photo in a location that is not in direct sunlight.

If you’re in any doubt whatsoever, leave it to the experts at PasPic.com. Our computer screens all incoming photos, and if necessary, refers them to a human being for a second manual check, so you’ll receive our expert verdict before submitting them on to the authorities with your application.

Who Can Countersign My Passport Application Photo?

UK Passport Photos

So you’ve got your passport photos from PasPic.com and you’re all set to apply for your UK passport. The form is filled in, and ready to send. Your passport photos are perfect and meet all the requirements which the government demand. There’s just one small matter – the countersigning of your passport photo.

The person who you ask to sign your photos is called a countersignatory. They are used simply to verify you are who you say you are. Because this is a pretty important role, there are strict rules about who is allowed to be a countersignatory for a passport application.

You don’t always need a countersignatory, but if you do, the countersignatory will need to sign both your passport application form and two of your photos if the passport you’re applying for is:

  1. The first passport for a child
  2. The first passport for an adult
  3. A replacement for a passport which has been damaged, stolen or lost
  4. A renewal for the passport of a child under the age of 11
  5. A renewal of an adult passport, where the adult’s appearance has changed so dramatically that their old passport photo looks nothing like them now

You can’t just grab anyone off the street to be a countersignatory either. Any countersignatory must have been known to the passport applicant (or the adult applying on behalf of a child) for a minimum of two years. It is asked that they can easily identify the applicant as a colleague, friend or neighbor, rather than just someone they’re aware of in their professional capacity. The final requirement is that they’re a “person of good community standing” – in other words, they’ve held a respected role such as a doctor, solicitor, accountant or teacher.

Your countersignatory cannot be someone who you’re related to, either by birth or marriage, and can’t be someone you’re in a relationship with, or sharing an address with.

If you’re applying for your passport from within the UK, the countersignatory must be living in the UK and hold a current British or Irish passport. Apply from outside the UK and your countersignatory must hold a current passport from Britain, Ireland, or another EU country. American and British Commonwealth passports are also accepted.

What to write when countersigning a passport photo.

Make sure that you follow the countersignatory rules closely. While not all countersignatories are contacted to verify the information you have provided, you want them to understand the responsibility of signing your passport photo before you send the application off.

Photographer Set Up For Successful Passport Photos

Successful Passport Photos

You don’t have to be a professional photographer to successfully set up a photoshoot to take acceptable passport photos of the whole family. There are a few simple steps you should follow to ensure the photos you take are appropriate for passport use. Camera placement and lighting are the biggest factors you should pay close attention to.

Positioning your camera

The U.S. Department of State, who issues passports for U.S. citizens, doesn’t allow you to take “selfies” or hand-held self-portraits, so you need someone to take your passport photo for you. This doesn’t mean you need a professional, just someone who can follow a simple photographer setup. This begins with where the camera is positioned.

The camera should be set at the eye level of the person being photographed and held at least four feet away. The photographer should frame the person in the viewfinder with just their upper body showing and empty space above the head.

Lighting and backgrounds

The background you use for passport pictures should be a solid white or off-white surface and should not contain any type of pattern, print or texture. The area should also be well lit with lighting strategically positioned to eliminate shadows.

How do I avoid passport photo shadows?

Don’t use overhead lighting, which can cast shadows. Instead, place one light on both sides of the person being photographed at about 45 degrees from their face. Place a third light close to and facing the background to uniformly illuminate and further remove shadows.

Exceptions for babies, but not children

Baby passport photos are the only ones that can differ from those you take for other members of the family. Depending on the age of the infant, it may not be able to hold its head up on its own and you’re not allowed to hold it up for them. In this case, you should lie the infant down on a plain, white or light-colored blanket with lighting on both sides of its head. Babies under one-year-old aren’t held to the rule of having their eyes open and mouth closed, but child passport photos for toddlers over this age should be treated the same as adults.